The Central Highlands won’t miss out on opportunities surrounding the development of the Adani mine in the Galilee Basin despite the Downer Mining announcing the Townsville, Rockhampton and Mackay as the three regional employment hubs for the $21.7 billion project.
Central Highland’s Mayor Cr Kerry Hayes and several representatives from the council and the Central Highlands Development Corporation attended a meeting of the Bowen Basin Mining Club last week to hear a presentation from Adani CEO Jeyakumar Janakaraj and Downer EDI COO Kurt Baumgart.
‘The message was strong and clear that local employment and economic opportunities are a key priority for Adani and its subcontractors,’ the mayor said.
‘We heard that the mine rail, port, supply chain and subcontracting opportunities will equate to thousands of direct and indirect employment opportunities spanning engineering, labour hire, transport, services, such as cleaning and catering, and professional services like accountancy, real estate and legal advice.
‘Of particular interest was that India is very strongly pursuing renewable energy technology and that Adani is interested in solar power developments in the Central Highlands.
‘Whether it’s coal or solar, any contractor or business within this region is well-placed to compete.
‘We haven’t just come aboard on the Galiliee Basin project—council and CHDC have been advocating and gearing up to support local business be ready for some time.
‘What’s been, and remains, important in this early stage prior to the project commencing is that local business has strong support to ensure they are ready to compete for the work.
‘As far back as December 2014, council and we signed a joint statement of commitment with 12 local government areas and organisations representing the Bowen, Surat and Galilee Basins industry sectors stating that: “Within our regions, we are committed to working closely with key stakeholders at all levels of the community, industry and government to ensure the delivery of strong local content outcomes to support the guiding principle commitments.”
‘One of our key advocacy priorities is that Emerald and the Central Highlands be a “region of choice” for supply and service provision business—for the establishment of new business and the development of existing business potential.
‘Business development and growth mean families move to the region and we’re busy marketing the Central Highlands as supply chain ready and family friendly to the influencers in the resource industry and of the Adani project.
‘CHDC competently represents the region on several resource sector and government working groups with a focus on economic development. Locally, it provides business with an online portal, business directory, Tap into Tenders newsletter and regular networking and learning opportunities.
‘This community can be 100 per cent confident that its interests and the future of this region are uppermost on our agenda,’ the mayor concluded.